Trans and Intersex Funding Initiative

Since 2009, the Global Philanthropy Project has played a role in increasing and influencing resources for trans and intersex communities. That work has included hosting the Trans and Intersex Funding Task Force for grantmakers interested in expanding philanthropic support to trans and intersex movements, organizing donor convenings and trainings, mobilizing resources, and producing critical knowledge on trans and intersex issues.

Between 2019-2020, global funding focused on gender identity rights increased both in amount ($13.7 million versus $10.9 million) and percentage (6% vs 4%) when compared with 2017-2018.

Between 2019-20, funding to address intersex rights increased both in amount ($3.9 million vs $2.1 million) and percentage (2% vs 1%) when compared with 2017-2018.

However, funding for trans and intersex movements is still very limited. Between 2019 and 2020, trans movements outside of the U.S. only received 12% of the total LGBTI funding, and intersex movements only received 3% of that total.

Since 2013, GPP members have strategized and collaborated through this task force to develop new research and support collaborative funding efforts towards increasing the amount and influencing the type of funding dedicated to trans and intersex issues globally.

Viviane Simakawa
Program Officer, International Trans Fund Co-Chair, Trans & Intersex Funding Task Force
Viviane Simakawa
Program Officer, International Trans Fund Co-Chair, Trans & Intersex Funding Task Force

Viviane works as Program Officer at the International Trans Fund. She is a transfeminist activist, researcher and economist based in Brazil, and is currently studying issues related to gender identities and expressions as a Ph.D. candidate in Women, Gender and Feminist Studies at the Federal University of Bahia (UFBA).

Félix Endara
Senior Program Associate for the Mesoamerica Program, Foundation for A Just Society Co-Chair, Trans & Intersex Funding Task Force
Félix Endara
Senior Program Associate for the Mesoamerica Program, Foundation for A Just Society Co-Chair, Trans & Intersex Funding Task Force

Felix is the Senior Program Associate for the Mesoamerica Program at Foundation for A Just Society. Born in Ecuador, Felix has worked in arts administration and philanthropic organizations that support multidisciplinary artists, including the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, North Star Fund, and Open Society Foundations. He is a queer trans filmmaker who documents the preservation of LGBT historical spaces, champions activists who catalyze social change, and disrupts the insidious narratives that deny the humanity of marginalized communities. Felix recently joined the Board of Working Films to support work to bring together documentary filmmakers and grassroots activists to advance social justice. He previously worked with Detroit Narrative Agency, Tribeca Institute, and the New Orleans Film Festival.

  • In 2017, GPP, Astraea, AJWS, and GATE organized a donor tour to disseminate research on the state of trans-organizing and the state of intersex organizing.
  • Between March and June 2021, GPP co-hosted Shimmering Solidarity: Global Rights Summit, a virtual series focused on grantmaker responses to anti-gender movements and related global anti-rights agenda. The Summit included over 50 sessions, with over 480 attendees representing grantmaking organizations, funder networks, and civil society partner organizations. Trans and Intersex issues were prioritized in the sessions. 
  • GPP has organized sessions and panels on trans and intersex issues at regional and international donor pre-conferences, most recently including ILGA World (USA 2022) and Pan Africa ILGA (Mauritius 2023).
  • GPP organizes yearly webinars on trans or intersex issues, the latest one titled “How can philanthropy support trans movements to fight against anti-gender attacks?” (2023).
Read “A Report from LGBTI Philanthropy” (TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly * Volume 9, Number 3 * August 2022) for an overview of GPP, member, and partner activities.

How can GPP help

  • GPP is a hub for research development related to funding for the trans and intersex movement. This includes GPP’s original research and our role as an implementation partner for resource mapping and research distribution to the philanthropic community. 
  • Our ongoing collection of relevant research offers a resource for those oriented to the conversation. 
  • GPP develops and moderates sessions, panels, webinars, research release events, and other public programs to elevate funding efforts for the trans and intersex movement. Together, we can develop opportunities for a broad set of philanthropic actors. 
  • GPP is a resource for your grantee cohort(s), sharing research and tools developed by GPP and our task force members.

2023 Webinars

2022 Webinars

2021 Webinars

2020 Webinars

2019 Webinars

Trans and Intersex Donor Tour 2017–2019

From 2017-2019, GPP partnered on a donor tour with American Jewish World Service (AJWS), Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice and Astraea’s Intersex Human Rights Fund, the International Trans Fund, and Global Action for Trans Equality (GATE) to present the data from the State of Intersex Organizing (2nd edition) and The State of Trans Organizing (2nd Edition) research. 

The tour, which comprised 5 countries (Canada, Germany, Sweden, The Netherlands, USA), aimed to advocate and influence the largest government and multilateral funders of international LGBTI issues, key women’s rights funders and networks, members of the Global Philanthropy Project (GPP), and other actors within international philanthropy to increase the amount and type of funding to trans and intersex organizations worldwide. In each tour location, the partners presented to and coordinated with local civil society organizations. 

This tour was the first-ever LGBTI funder delegation to donor governments

The donor tour demonstrated its success by achieving meetings with high-level government contacts, making the case, and securing commitments of increased funding. It also emphasized the need for an accelerated strategy to ensure that commitments are followed through on and statements of support are translated into real resources and donor action.

From right: Sara Gunther, Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice; Mauro Cabral Grinspan, GATE; Erin Howe, Strength in Numbers. 

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